ONE of the five victims who died in the Chitungwiza blast last week was on Sunday finally identified as Sticks Chitanha, a barman with a local five-star hotel, his family confirmed yesterday.
REPORT BY FELUNA NLEYA STAFF REPORTER
Chitanha, who reportedly resided in St Mary’s in Chitungwiza, was buried in Hurungwe on Monday. The blast claimed the lives of a self-styled traditional healer Speakmore Mandere, businessman Clever Kamudzeya, a seven-month-old baby Kelly Chimina, a former police officer Aleck Shamu and Chitanha.
The sixth victim, an elderly man, died on Monday, allegedly from the effects of the blast.
In an interview with NewsDay yesterday, deceased’s son-in-law Doubt Compound confirmed Chitanha was one of the five people who had perished in the mishap.
“We thought he had travelled to Hurungwe for a funeral, but when other mourners returned they told us that my father-in-law had not attended. That is when they looked for him and found him at Chitungwiza Hospital mortuary,” Compound said.
“We took his body on Sunday and buried him in Hurungwe on Monday.” When contacted for comment, police spokesperson Superintendent Andrew Phiri said he was yet to be furnished with the name of the deceased.
Police on Tuesday said preliminary investigations had shown that the blast had been caused by explosives, ruling out speculation that it was a supernatural phenomenon like lightning or black magic.
National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba said it had come to the police’s attention that grenades and other explosives had of late been a source of money for some unscrupulous dealers.
She said the dealers sought to extract mercury from the explosives which was believed to sell for a fortune on the black market.
Police said they were investigating where the people involved in the explosives trade were getting them from.